'Drugs and development in Africa: Exploring what we know' - Online event, 19th Oct
On the 19th October, the International Drug Policy Consortium, UNODC, African Union, University of Cape Town, the Global Partnership on Drug Policies and Development, and the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime will host an online seminar that seeks to revisit the issue of drugs and development in Africa from a refreshed angle.
The African continent has a long history with drug cultivation, production, consumption and trade. The complexity of the drug issue in Africa mirrors the broad complexity of the continent itself. Moreover, as with drugs, Africa is often treated as a homogenous entity, with little attempt to reflect the varied geographic and cultural nuances or historical idiosyncrasies. Cannabis and khat each have a storied sociocultural history of production and use. Opiates, such as heroin; stimulants, like cocaine and methamphetamine; pharmaceuticals diverted for illicit misuse, and an ever-evolving range of novel synthetic concoctions are among the array of more recent substances of production, use and trade across the continent.
Efforts and attention towards rethinking the drug issue in the Global South, specifically in Africa, have been increasingly mobilized in recent years. However, much of the available mainstream discourse, research and literature on drugs and development in Africa were not conducted by Africans and/or is not accessible to the local groups and communities as they are often produced in the global north and paywalled behind academic publication platforms. Indeed, few examples exist of holistic discussions on this topic in the region. The purpose of this virtual event is to revisit the issue of drugs and development in Africa from a refreshed angle, by seeking to:
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